F.d.U./B.d.U.'S War Log
Karl DönitzKarl Dönitz
, (b. Sept. 16, 1891, Grünau in Berlin, Germany - d.Dec. 22, 1980, Aumühle, Schleswig-Holstein, West Germany),president of Germany (1945). He entered the German Navy in1910 and during World War I served as a submarine officer in theBlack Sea and the Mediterranean. After the war he continued hisnaval career first as commander of a torpedo boat and later of the cruiser Emden. In the aftermath of Adolf Hitler's accession topower, despite the Versailles Treaty's absolute ban on Germansubmarine construction, Dönitz clandestinely supervised thecreation of a new U-boat fleet, over which he was subsequentlyappointed commander (1936). Because of the shortage of materials and the priority Hitler gave to the Luftwaffe, Germanyhad only 25 U-boats capable of service in the Atlantic at theoutbreak of World War II. By the end of the war, however, around1,000 U-boats had been built and placed in service, more thanhalf of which were destroyed by the Allies. Out of 39,000 menwho served aboard German U-boats, 27,082 perished. In themidst of World War II, in January 1943, he was called to replaceAdm. Erich Raeder as commander in chief of the German Navy.His loyalty and ability soon won him the confidence of Hitler. OnApril 20, 1945, shortly before the collapse of the Nazi regime,Hitler appointed Dönitz head of the northern military and civilcommand. Finally - in his last political testament - Hitler namedDönitz his successor as president of the Reich, minister of war,and supreme commander of the armed forces. Assuming thereins of government on May 2, 1945, Dönitz retained office foronly a few days. In 1946 he was sentenced to 10 years'imprisonment by the International Military Tribunal atNuremberg. He was released from prison in 1956.
Notes Regarding The F.d.U./B.d.U.'S War Log
August 15, 1939 to January 15, 1945Without this "composite" collection, researchers have tostruggle through a series of nearly 130 separate reportsto follow the sequence of 'expectations and reports'about the movement of Germany's WWII U-Boats
a time-consuming exercise which
can beshort-cut here by simply using the Edit / Find facility onthe computer toolbar and entering no more than thenumber of the U-Boat in question
. The reports here may be found in the archives of The U.S. NavalHistorical Center (NHC), at The Navy Yard, Washington D.C. andtoo, in German, in The U.S. National Archives and RecordsAdministration (NARA) in College Park, Maryland, a suburb of Washington D.C..
Not included here
, is either the report for the period October16 to 31, 1943, the original, unfilmed, to be found as item RM87/32, in the custody of the Bundesarchiv-Abt. Militararchiv, orthe reports from January 16 to April 21, 1945, which areunderstood to be found elsewhere, in German, on 'microreels3900 and 1755-1759, 1995'.